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Computing Archive

  • The Big Dig

    To bury Boston’s busiest highway underground, engineers are simulating traffic flows on their computers (to give the highway a brain) and starting huge fires in West Virginia (to give it a fire control system).

  • Let My Computer Serve Me!

    Forget the multimedia distractions. Computer developers should strive for simplicity, eas of use, and machines that are “people-aware.”

  • To Mac or Not to Mac?

    A self-confessed Macintosh devotee contemplates the ultimate sacrifice: moving to a PC running Windows. Is life worth living on the Dark Side?

    1 comment

  • Chess is Too Easy

    Forget about Big Blue vs. Kasparov–the best test of artificial intelligence is to ask a computer to write a story. Meet Brutus.1, a software agent that creates short tales of betrayal,self-deception, and evil worthy of a human creator.

  • Aviation's Next Great Leap

    Strapping rockets onto an aircraft creates a new breed of space plane. Look for cheaper satellite launch, ultrafast package delivery, and hypersonic passenger transport that would leave the Concorde in the dust.

  • Honey, They've Shrunk the Rover

    The Sojourner vehicle that trekked across the Martian surface captured the world’s fancy last summer, but we haven’t seen anything yet. Next will come rovers that can roam miles across Mars and “aerobots” able to survey other planets.

  • Digital Perfection

    Computer-using children are extraordinarily self-critical of their own handiwork as they strain to emulate the digitial perfection they see in commercial software. Why can’t we let kids be kids?

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